Polyamory in the News!
. . . by Alan M.



May 1, 2013

Authorized "Ethical Slut" comedy webseries is planned


Yes, plans are afoot for a comedy webseries based on the open-relationship classic The Ethical Slut. And yes, authors Dossie Easton and Janet Hardy have authorized the project. They are working with award-winning web-show producer Ben Fritz of Los Angeles and support the vision he has expressed to them for it.

"The first season will be 12 episodes, each about 10 minutes long," says a publicity post. It's to be filmed this summer in Madison, Wisconsin. Fritz and co-producer Mike Murray have opened an office in Madison and are recruiting cast. They have also reached out to the poly community "so at the very least we could get some ideas and insight into some things this community would like to see portrayed."

How much of this happens, and when, may depend on their kickstarter campaign. As of May 1st it was a little more than halfway to its $30,000 goal with little time left. [Update May 9th: They made the goal, barely, with help from publicity in Madison newspapers in the final few days. It looked to me like some big donor was pledging and de-pledging to adjust the fundraising drama toward the goal.] The Kickstarter link includes this video:




An article about the project has appeared in Oakland Local in California:


Sex-positive classic written in Oakland to be made into web show

By Airial Clark

You may not know this, but one of the world’s most popular books on consensual non-monogamy, "The Ethical Slut," has it roots in Oakland.

The expanded 2nd edition, 2009
...How do the authors feels about their book being adapted into a web-series?

Janet Hardy said: "Well, we like Ben very much — the three of us spent a weekend together, hiking and talking and making sure we were on the same page, and we both felt confident that his approach was one we could live with. And I think a web series has the potential to reach audiences that might never pick up a polyamory book."

Dossie agrees, saying, "This seems to me like a nifty way to bring our lifestyle and our ideas to the public in a lighthearted and fun way. I'm hoping the representations of poly people will give an at least sort of realistic view of who we are and that people can identify even if they don't choose our lifestyle."

Any adaption comes with the risk of the original work being lost in translation, so I asked the authors if they were worried. According to Janet their biggest concern is that the series will find the right balance between humor/sexiness and respect for the material: “We don't want our material presented as a f--kfest and neither do we want it turned into slapstick. We also don't want our book, or poly in general, presented as hetero-centrist, which has been a problem in many mainstream depictions of poly. We wouldn't have signed with Ben if we hadn't felt comfortable with his ability to walk that line.”

I checked in with Fritz to see if he has the same goals for the web-series.

“I am excited to explore all sexualities," he said. "The main characters will be Queer and everything in between.”

He also mentioned another text written by Janet Hardy, her new memoir, "Girl Fag: A Life Told in Sex and Musicals," as another source of material for the show.

“This story is a journey, an arc, of how some regular old Middle-Americans rediscover joy and the wonders of self-knowledge,” Fritz said.

...Ben advised me that he choose to set the series in Middle-America because he “didn't want the story to be dismissed as one of the crazy things those Californians do, as California is already associated with fringe societies. Setting it in a more traditional Mid-America environment gives opportunity to create drama as this new progressive way of relating meets up with traditional views.”

The show is early in production with casting decisions still being made.... Both Easton and Hardy expressed their hope for the project to find adequate funding to be produced the way it should be.


Here's the original article (April 26, 2013).

A publicist for the project posted this on reddit/r/polyamory:


Hi all,

My good friend Ben has obtained the rights to the world famous Polyamory guidebook "The Ethical Slut"! He has won awards for his previous web-series "Cynthia Watros gets lost" and now plans on making a web-series based on the guidebook filmed in Madison, WI. this summer. The first season will be 12 episodes each about 10 minutes long. Ben has tasked me with reaching out to the polyamory communities so at the very least we could get some ideas and insight into some things this community would like to see portrayed in the Web-series based on the book "The Ethical Slut".

We have also started a kickstarter campaign to raise some money to pay for good talent, and other cost associated with filming.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1140659809/ethical-slut?ref=city

There are some really cool rewards, especially to anyone that has a close connection with this book and most of them are really affordable. For instance you can become an on-screen extra to playing a role in the series yourself. There is even a level to receive recognition as an Executive Producer!

Like I said, If you can't join the kickstarter campaign, at the very least we would really appreciate if this community could give some input or ideas you think are worth exploring in the series, I would love to hear them as well! I'm sure "The Ethical Slut" has a lot of significant meaning or has helped some of you along the way in your quest for successful Polyamorous living. Nows your chance to help it continue to stay in the spotlight and to help others!

Thank you and I hope to hear back from some of you.


Immediately one or two commenters kicked up a controversy about whether the book is sex-and-swinging oriented rather than poly, and whether a webseries based on it would be a shallow letdown. Fritz replied,


Hi, thanks for taking some time to check out the project. I've never heard any-one call me slick, and I've never been to film school. What I love about this journey is it's so much more than sex. Yes, sex fills the seats, it perks up our ears; but this story is ultimately about growth and self-knowledge, and yes, unconditional love. I have no interest in exploiting this story, and I spent time with the authors to talk about how best to honor it and still entertain. In a best case scenario I hope concepts shared can help people heal and grow their own relationships, whatever they may be. We plan on representing all sexualities.


Yesterday Fritz posted an update:


We are half way to our goal of $30,000! As the money comes in, everything is aligning for an awesome community project. We just opened our production office in downtown Madison, right across from the capital! We've started auditions and crew interviews, and boy, there is so much talent here in Madison alone. Please help spread the word, we will be doing a big push over the next few weeks.


Here's the whole reddit thread.

P. S. You may remember earlier plans by Moses Ma in 2007 to make an Ethical Slut movie based on the book. Nothing came of that.

[Permalink]

Labels: ,

1 Comments:

Anonymous Sarah Taub said...

As of right now (1 PM Eastern USA time), they need $1633, with 20 hours to go!

May 08, 2013 1:10 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home